A Poppy
A Poppy

Memorials & Monuments
on the Isle of Wight
- People -
- Newchurch - Herbert Frank Tutton -


Stoker Petty Officer K66243 Herbert Frank Tutton, D.S.M., Royal Navy


Biography from the Book of Remembrance, All Saints Church, Newchurch, Isle of Wight.
Biographical information

Lower Winstone is just within the Parish boundary beyond Whiteley Bank and STOKER PETTY OFFICER HERBERT FRANK TUTTON was born there on the 12th May 1907, the second son of Herbert Alfred Tutton and Annie Tutton. Mr Tutton Senior had been for many years a shepherd at Lea Farm and he continued as a farm worker after moving to Lower Winstone, then to Apse Manor Cottages and finally to Apse Heath.

Bert Tutton first attended Wroxall School but on the family moving to Apse he transferred to Newchurch School and there finished his schooldays. The Tutton family were regular worshippers at Apse Heath Methodist Church and as a boy Bert was a member of the Sunday School there.

On leaving school Bert was apprenticed to a bricklayer but his heart was set on joining the Royal Navy and on the 22nd May 1925, ten days after his eighteenth birthday, he achieved his great desire and entered the Navy as a stoker. Bert was a round jolly man and every inch a sailor. During the following fourteen years of peacetime Navy he saw service in all parts of the world, including a spell on the China station, and the ships of the Fleet in which he served included His Majesty's Ships 'Dryad', 'Sandwich','Vindictive', and 'Resource' and during the Spanish Civil War he served in Western Mediterranean waters on the aircraft carrier H.M.S. Courageous.

On 26th December 1936 he married Joan Elizabeth Martin of 'Poplar' Apse Heath, a member of an old Apse Heath family, at York Road Methodist Church at Sandown, and for the first years of their married life they lived at Copnor, Portsmouth.

At the outbreak of war in 1939 he was serving in the cruiser 'Enterprise' but was immediately transferred to H.M.S. Kennett, an 'Axe' class trawler, being the only R.N. man in her complement of 18.

In 1940 Bert Tutton received the Navy Long Service and Good Conduct medal and in the same year he joined H.M.S. Berkeley, a newly-built destroyer of the 'Hunt' class, on her first commissioning. Then followed many months of gruelling convoy work, including participation in the evacuation of Dunkirk.

On 19th August 1942 H.M.S. Berkeley was engaged in the desperate attack by Canadian forces on the harbour of Dieppe. During the course of this terible battle and as the Allied forces were marshalling to set sail for home the destroyer was hit abaft the bridge by a bomb jettisoned at random by an enemy aircraft making a vain attempt to escape from a British fighter aircraft and from this random blow Bert Tutton lost his life. The 'Berkeley' was so badly damaged that it was finally destroyed by Royal Navy torpedoes. In a letter to Mrs Joan Tutton the Captain of the 'Berkeley' said "I could bear the loss of the 'Berkeley' if it was not for the loss of such fine men as your husband. Throughout the Dieppe operation he behaved with great coolness and judgment and set a fine example".

In the 1942 New Year's Honours List Stoker Petty Officer Herbert Frank Tutton had been awarded the Distinguished Service Medal for bravery and devotion to duty and his widow received this award from the hands of His Majesty King George VI at Buckingham Palace on 2nd March 1943.

Commemorated on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial, Hampshire.

CWGC record ...


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